Justin Timberlake may have earned seven Grammy nominations, but he still has reason to cry himself a river: The pop star was shut out of the top Grammy categories—album, song, and record of the year—though his comeback effort, The 20/20 Experience, is 2013's best-selling release. It might seem a bit much to call the second most nominated act at the Grammys snubbed, but it's only fitting after Timberlake's ultra-successful homecoming: The singer had back-to-back, multiplatinum hits with "Suit & Tie" and "Mirrors." In other Grammy-nom news:
- Timberlake's nominations include best pop vocal album, pop solo performance for "Mirrors," and R&B song for "Pusher Love Girl." He also shares four nominations with Jay Z—who is the Grammy leader with nine nominations—for their hits "Suit & Tie" and "Holy Grail."
- Rap newcomers are having Grammy breakthroughs: Kendrick Lamar, the critical darling, and Macklemore & Ryan Lewis, the rap duo who blazed the pop charts with a same sex anthem and a tune about used clothes. Both have seven nominations, including the coveted album of the year and best new artist. "Same Love," Macklemore & Ryan Lewis' original first single, is nominated for song of the year.
- For album of the year, the Seattle-based rap group's independently-released debut, The Heist, will battle Lamar's good kid, m.A.A.d city, Taylor Swift's Red, Daft Punk's Random Access Memories and Sara Bareilles' The Blessed Unrest, the only album in the group to not reach gold status.
- Bareilles, who got a boost this year after Katy Perry's "Roar" had been criticized for sounding like the piano-playing singer's "Brave," will see her song battle Perry's No. 1 hit in the best pop solo performance category.
- The tracks competing for record of the year also mirrored the Billboard charts: "Royals," "Locked Out of Heaven" and the year's longest-running No. 1 song, Robin Thicke's "Blurred Lines," is up against Daft Punk's "Get Lucky" and Imagine Dragons' "Radioactive," songs that peaked at No. 2 and 3 on the charts, respectively.
Click for more on this year's nominations